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Kroger buys branch of customer research firm

Bill Rinehart

The relationship between the nation's largest supermarket chain and a market researcher is about to become tighter. 

Cincinnati based Kroger and dunnhumby Ltd. are replacing their current joint venture with a new agreement.  The grocery store company will also buy certain assets of dunnhumbyUSA, and operate under the name 84.51° with 500 current dunnhumbyUSA employees in Cincinnati. Those employees will become associates of 84.51°, a wholly-owned subsidiary of The Kroger Co.

84.51° will have access to dunnhumby Ltd’s analytical tools but dunnhumby Ltd. will not have access to Kroger’s data.

The headquarters is currently under construction at Fifth and Race.

Financial terms were not disclosed. According to a press release from the two companies, no layoffs are expected.

The agreement takes effect Monday, April 27.

Rinehart has been a radio reporter since 1994 with positions in markets like Omaha and Lincoln, Nebraska; Sioux City, Iowa; Dayton, Ohio; and most recently as senior correspondent and anchor for Cincinnati’s WLW-AM.